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Toxicity to aquatic algae and cyanobacteria

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Description of key information

Key value for chemical safety assessment

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Justification for read across:

There are no specific experimental data available for MK1 diesel fuel. Compositional and physico-chemical data show that MK1 Diesel Fuel is very similar to Kerosine. It is considered appropriate, therefore, to read across from the Kerosine data to MK1 Diesel Fuel. In that respect, the conclusions on the ecological toxicity endpoints for MK1 Diesel Fuel will be the same for those of Kerosine.  Further discussion on ecological toxicity will concern Kerosine, and data endpoints that are waived for Kerosine will be waived for MK1 Diesel Fuel.

Short-term toxicity to aquatic invertebrates has been filled by read-across of measured data from kerosine. It is supported in a weight of evidence approach by a calculated value using composition information derived from two dimensional gas chromatography in conjunction with the PETROTOX model.

In a key read-across 72-hour toxicity test (OECD 201; KS=1), cultures of the freshwater plant Raphidocelis subcapitata were exposed to solvent naphtha (petroleum), heavy aromatic kerosine at nominal concentrations of 0, 0.1, 0.4, 1.0, 3.0, and 10.0 mg/L under static conditions. The 72-hour NOEL and EL50 values based on most average specific growth rates were 1.0 mg/L and 1 to 3 mg/L, respectively. The % growth inhibition, based on average specific growth rate, in the treated algal cultures as compared to the control ranged from 7.1 to 270%. Signs of phytoxicity include a reduction in growth rate (Shell, 1994).

In two reliable read-across supporting algae toxicity studies (Selenastrum capricornutum) for two different kerosines products (Exxon, 1995h, 1995i) tested using the WAF methodology and following OECD Guideline 201, the 96 -hour EL50 (loading rate resulting in 50% decrease in growth of algae) varied between 5.0 to 6.2 mg/L (based on both area under the growth curve and average specific growth rates). The NOEL for these tests varied between 0.4 and 6.2 mg/L. In another reliable read-across supporting algae toxicity study (Raphidocelis subcapitata) for hydrodesulfurised kerosine (Shell, 1995) was tested using WAF methodology, the 72 -hour EL50 was 10 to 30 mg/L WAF (based on both area under the growth curve and average specific growth rates). The NOEL was 10 mg/L. In another read-across supporting algae toxicity study testing sweetened kerosine (Exxon, 1995g), on Selenastrum capricornutum, the 72-hour EL50 was 3.7 mg/L.

Based on PETROTOX data, the estimated algal 72-hour LL50 value is >1000 mg/L, while the estimated algal 72-hour NOEL value for this substance is 0.43 mg/L (Redman et al., 2010b).